Friday, 22 June 2012

Kullu-Manali memories - Roerich museum

     My parents came to India. It was their first journey after a long time of being settled in a home town. I was very happy for them and wanted to show a small piece of India. My husband organized few trips. One was to Agra, when we visited Taj Mahal and I made a post about it. Another one which I failed to describe that time was a trip to Kullu-Manali, Himalayas. Why was it so significant I will tell later.
     Parents, as well as me, could never ever imagine being in India some day. I know that they still recollect all the moments of their adventures here. I miss them too. However nowadays it is so much easier to keep these memories alive when you have a camera with you. So today I'd like to get back to the past and tell about a one year old journey.

     I got to know about Kullu-Manali when I was already in India. I found in the internet that there was a museum of a Russian painter of XIX-XX century,  Nicholas Roerich, and asked my D if he would ever take me there, he promised he would. He kept his promise when we made a trip to one of the most beautiful places I've ever seen - Kullu-Manali. Actually these are two different places but they always stand together as the areas are very close to each other. I am not going to tell about them in my blog as there is planty of info in the internet about Manali and Kullu.
   The first part of my memories is dedicated to our visit to Nicholas Roerich museum in Kullu. So let's dive into them, like Harry Potter into Dambledore's pensive :)
 "International Roerich Memorial Trust" or in short, Roerich museum, is located in Kullu in the very house where Nicholas Roerich and his family were living after 4 year expedition and till painter's death.
Kullu valley itself is such a place where you feel so light and out of the pressure of the modern world.
    This view is breathtaking! Kullu city is situated on the elevation of 4000 ft (1220 m). The view of Kullu valley.

    I love the clouds in the mountains, the way they are floating and clubbing, feels like you can fly.

This picture is my favorite - such sunshine you can see only in mountains, and see this tiny bird's shape... Nature is so beautiful.

   I was so happy to be in this place and also understand how the Russian painter could feel living in this surroundings and what inspired him to create so many beautiful works.
  The Roerich house is not big and has two levels plus attic ( I suppose). This is the only (no idea why) picture of the house I can show you. And also there is my Mom in there, enjoying a walk along the old wooden floor.

   I also liked a garden around the house, full of flowers and mountain plants. I liked walking on the garden paths and breathe in fresh mountain air.

   The upper floor of the museum arranged in such a way that you have to literally peer inside the house through the windows. All the interior which belonged to a  Roerich family is kept on its place like no one ever left it.

These are some of the showpieces which catch your eye. So creative idea - to make a watch from a stone! There you can see a Tibetan knot lying on the crystal.

The first floor also has some exhibits like these cute Russian dolls and other statuettes.

 Nicholas Roerich himself, a portrait by his son Svetoslav Roerich.

Some if the artworks shown in the museum.

The map of the great Central-Asian expedition conducted by Roerich. It lasted from 1924 to 1928.

In honor of 100 year since Roerich's birth, the 1 rupee coin was issued.

This is a small altar beside the house which Roerich made himself. This altar, as I found out, includes Guga Chohan (Chauhan) - a small deity figure on the horse in the middle of composition. 

 There will be no conclusion in this post... as we continued our journey in Himalayas. I just would like to say that I want to come here again and feel the mountain air again, and see the beauty of the valley again... to refresh these precious memories.
P.S. thanks to my D for fulfilling my dream and imprinting it in all the pictures above.

 *** Have precious memories with you always!***

Monday, 18 June 2012

Recipe "Dacha taste" - vegetables in a pan

              This dish I picked from my Mum. She used to make it at dacha, as it  involves vegetables you grow there! Hence let’s call it “Dacha taste”. There can go any vegetables you find in the fridge (if you are not at dacha at the moment) like potato, tomato, squash, onion, cabbage, French beans. There are no particular measurements of ingredients as well – see by eye how much will be sufficient for your family.


         Cut the vegetables into round pieces, put a bit of oil in a deep pan (or a "kadai" in my case) and start creating layers. Each layer sprinkle with any herbs and spices you have, for example, parsley, fennel, crushed zira, red pepper powder or any of you choice, add salt on top of each layer too. To make dish more tasty you can prepare some fried onion and tomato in a pan and put this on a top of all layers in the end. Then simply cover your layered vegetables with preliminarily boiled water and start cooking on a low flame until the water starts boiling. The dish is ready when potato and other hard vegetables are soft (obviously :).
            This view is just before you put boiled water. I usually make up to 3 layers.

             For a non-veg recipe you can simply add previously cooked (fried or steamed) pieces of meat between the veg layers. You can also opt for a soup like dish or for a steamed one by choosing how much water to add.
                                                                  *** Have a nice meal!***

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Anniversary Friday moments

   This weekend has been a long one. Me and D both don't feel like going to work. It was so lovely time together, we used to go out and stay at home, enjoying lazy moments :) It is good to work too but to rest is not bad as well :P
   In spite of having no work these days I got busy with some home deals, and on the day of our anniversary I prepared lunch and baked a mango cake! Yea, I am trying to be a homely wife and learn some new recipes.
   So lunch I made was a dish I picked from my Mum. She likes to make it at dacha. It is very easy and tasty! The recipe is here.

  The mango season over here now, so why not to use this delicious fruit for baking when it is easily available in any market. I got  the recipe from this blog post in the internet (where else?:)) Mango cake was tasty, but it took too much time for an oven I use to bake it properly.

  Anniversary day was so pleasant and had surprise for me as well when my husband gifted me flowers and a card with congratulations. I clicked the pictures of the flowers the next day (sorry). These gladioli are so lovely:

 My husband, me and my in-laws spent Friday evening in the Chinese restaurant where we all  tried a Chinese sizzler for the first time. I took the picture just moments  before they started serving it. There was such mixture of vegetables in it plus chicken, fish and noodles! Worth trying if you crave for some tasty exotic food.

   The Friday went on good and smooth as it was supposed to :) There were tasty, beautiful and cozy moments. We had a very nice celebration and now heading towards the next year when our relations would be three years strong!

                          *** Have a great week ahead and have more memorable moments in your life***

Friday, 15 June 2012

Second Wedding Anniversary - Together:)

      After my husband's birthday, it is time for celebration again - our Wedding Anniversary, a second one! I can't believe that it's been already two years as we are together!
     We had different times throughout our marriage, but no matter what, we always tried not to forget how much efforts we put into this small word "together". We wanted to be together when we were far from each other. Now we just can't afford being far when we are so close :) Forever is not yours, but together is in your hands!
    Today as we both grow two years older, our love and relations are still young and exciting. We cherish the memories of the beginning of our love and it makes us strong. We still discover each others personalities, exchange each others cultures, and of course, becoming closer to each other day by day. May be I can't read my D's mind yet, but I already know what makes him happy and what makes him sad. I bet he knows this about me too.
     I am blessed and happy that I have such husband as D is. He is my life's Sun (as this is his name's meaning). And this means a lot to me! I  Love you, D, and want to be together with you always!
   Today I can afford to post my and my husband's pic :) Just once in a while :)) Hehe

                                                ***   Have a nice day and be happy!!!***

Friday, 8 June 2012

Easy double crochet (treble crochet) tutorial

   I must say that double crochet is my favorite stitch. I work with it in all my crochet projects. Now I am using it for making a table rug. Also I used loads of double crochet stitches for making granny hexagons, my granny hexagon tutorial. Double crochet = treble crochet in UK terminology. Though I neither follow US nor UK crochet school, I use US "double crochet" as it corresponds Russian crochet terminology. I know there are many tutorials in the net however I wanted to make my own double crochet tutorial to link it to my projects. So here we go!
  This is your initial loop, it can be a loop in the process of crocheting (like in the picture below) or a loop in the very beginning, when you have just made a chain of stitches.

Step 1. Slip on yarn.

 Step 2. Insert the hook under the next stitch:

 Step 3. Slip on yarn again and...

 Step 4. Drag yarn thread through the same stitch. Now you have 3 loops on your hook.

 Step 5. Slip on yarn again and...

 Step 6. Drag yarn thread through first 2 loops on your hook. Now there are 2 loops on the hook left:

 Step 7. Slip on yarn and...

 Step 9. Drag it through the remaining 2 loops on the hook. One loop will be left. Your double crochet (treble crochet) is done :)
  The next double crochet (treble crochet) you will have to make in the next from a hook stitch.

Hope it was useful and please, give your suggestions on the improvement of tutorials :)
                                                 ***Have a nice weekend!***

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

A Birthday, a cake and a poem :)

    June always starts on a good note for me because we celebrate my husband's Birthday on the 5th day of this month! :) My Indian boy grew one year older yesterday, but I feel like he didn't change much since the day we met. And this is what makes me happy too )) I am still feeling like we have just met and have loads of things to share and understand in each others worlds.
   My dear D, be happy and I Love you a lot!
   Now let me boast a bit :) I didn't buy any present for my D... but I managed to do things for him with my hands :) The first gift was for a "body" - this chocolate cake recipe I found in the internet here and it was so easy to make it! Moreover cake doesn't contain eggs what makes it a good dessert for vegetarians.

The cake ( to my disappointment) didn't come out fluffy, but no worries, it was a first one ever chocolate cake I made, so next ones will be better :) The taste however was very good and chocolaty indeed! I also grated some almonds and cashews on the top of the cake.
    This was the second gift, for a "soul",  - an envelope with a poem inside ( I am blushing now;). My D liked it a lot as think he was not expecting it from me :)
     So these were moments of happiness yesterday. We had a small dinner with our family (my in-laws and sister-in-law) and it was really nice, very cozy and cheerful. :)
    There is also one more good occasion for celebration in June - our wedding  anniversary! I am thinking of making a cake again... or let it go the way it is, no plans, but improvisation!

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Fairy - I like So Much!

 Well, well, well... I have been out of my blogging for a while and I am really missing it! I have become very attached to my blog, no matter what I post here and how. I do it for my own enjoyment. I am preparing some more tutorials on crochet, so it'll take a bit of time to upload it and describe. Also I want to improve language of my tutorials, so that it is easy to follow instructions. Wow, what plans I have! :)
 However today I am not going to blog about my garden or crochet, or our Sunday trips. I am going to show what else I like to collect if you say. And this is Fairies! Yes, those tiny creatures with beautiful wings and beautiful dresses.Fairy means Magic. I wish I met one some day. I still believe in fairy tales. So my Fairy picks from Etsy (again, yea:)) Links are given in caption.
The first pick I made were these cute Fairy shoes:
 Another one is this Cameo ring. Lovely antique style!

        Fairy Cameo Antiqued Silver Filigree Ring

      This tiny bottle with a magic wand won my heart! So sweet idea.
This hand made Fairy house is just amazing! Moreover it is useful, besides it's fairy tale look, because it is also a knitting patterns store!
 Haha, this cute Fairy doll raises my mood)) Hope you also like it!!!
 There are also numerous fairy doors, fairy dust bottles, fairy wings... I think that as soon as people believe in fairies, magic and make such nice things like I showed above, our world has future.
  ***Wishing everyone a Magical week!!!***
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